DPD arrests man in homicide of victim whose remains were found in suitcases

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DENVER — The Denver Police Department arrested a man Friday in their investigation into a homicide involving human remains discovered in suitcases last week.

Police arrested Benjamin Satterthwaite, 28, on a charge of first-degree murder.

Police were called to the 1700 block of S. Java Way on Dec. 29 for reports of suspicious bags beside the road and found the human remains inside. A Denver Parks and Recreation employee said one of the department’s employees found the suitcases around 7:15 a.m. Tuesday while clearing snow from the Sanderson Gulch Trail in the Mar Lee neighborhood of Denver.

On Jan. 1, Denver Police officers responded to an apartment in the 2800 block of S. Federal Blvd. for a medical-related call. While there, they discovered evidence and a crime scene consistent with the homicide case. Their follow-up investigation resulted in Satterthwaite’s arrest.

Investigators believe they know who the victim is, though the Office of the Medical Examiner has not confirmed his identity. DPD said the victim and the suspect knew each other.

DPD did not release further details into what may have happened.

Swatterthwaite had a court appearance Friday. A Colorado Bureau of Investigation report shows a lengthy criminal record, including convictions for vehicular assault-DUI, contempt of court violation, making a false report and attempted escape.